21 September 2012 Last updated at 06:17 ET

When will we send humans to Mars?

Doctor Alexander Kumar

In the first instalment of a two-part feature, Dr Alexander Kumar – who has been overwintering at Concordia Station, Antarctica – examines what it would take to send humans to Mars, and what lessons we can learn from similar environments on Earth.

Just how far are we from mounting a crewed mission to the Red Planet?

It’s a question I ponder as I stare into a powerful telescope and see a reddish hue in the surrounding darkness.

I have been overwintering at the French-Italian outpost of Concordia station in Antarctica, which is also used to study how humans might one day survive a trip to the Red Planet.

Read more: BBC News – Viewpoint: When will we send humans to Mars?

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